Windows 7 Tutorial

Prevent saving changes to a file in Windows 7 (Protect files from modifications with Readonly)

Protected file (read only) in Windows 7 By default, any file you create in Windows 7 will be editable after the fact: in other words, anyone who has access to it can open it, view its content, make changes to it, and save the changes. But what if you have a file that you want to protect from modifications? A typical example is a sales form or other document that many people need to access, but that should remain intact for the next time they use it - users need to save a copy of the file, but leave the original untouched. Windows 7 makes this possible thanks to the "Read-only" (or "readonly")  properties of files; you will also learn about the limitations of protecting files this way (and an alternative).


Make a file read-only, and prevent any modification

Follow these steps to protect a file (or group of files) from changes:

How effective is read-only to protect files from modifications and prevent changes?

Anyone who knows about the readonly property of files and folders in Windows 7 can manually "override" that setting by unchecking the "Read-only" checkbox in the file's properties (in which case the file reverts back to being editable).

In other words, read-only protects your files from being accidentally saved-over, but doesn't protect you from voluntary and/or malicious attempts at saving over an original readonly file.

A later tutorial will explain how to truly protect files from editing by using "Windows authentication" and "file permissions" - this is a bit more complex, but also more efficient a protection. For now, the readonly property, easy to access and easy to configure, will do!

up ↑
Copyright © 2016 Windows 7 Tutorial. All rights reserved — Sitemap | Disclaimer | Feedback